Monday, October 23rd

Monday, October 23rd

by kandynet 0 Comments

Breakfast: I made pumpkin overnight oats, but forgot to take a photo. Good news is, I’m having the same damn thing for breakfast tomorrow morning, so I’ll take a photo then.


Lunch: I made this veggy soup last Sunday, but the nice thing about non-meat/dairy leftovers is the last longer! This baby’s got: cabbage, potatoes, zucchinis, green beans, carrots, tomatoes, etc. I actually can’t remember everything that’s in there, kinda a dump pot of food I had in the fridge.


Dinner: It’s that time of year again. The time for lots of big bowls of soups and stews. Marc made this beef stew, garlic bread for dipping, and that white stuff is sour cream with a little horse radish in it.

Friday, October Twentieth

Friday, October Twentieth

by kandynet 0 Comments

Breakfast: This past Tuesday, Marc made tacos with sweet potatoes and soyrizo.

Oh, you haven’t heard of soyrizo? It’s this amazing little thing, tastes like chorizo, except cheaper and lasts longer in the fridge. The kind we used here was Tofurky, which wasn’t that bad! Most things I’ve tried from that brand are gross, so I was pleasantly surprised with their soyrizo. But my favorite kind ever is Cacique brand. It is honestly better than actual chorizo. Like I already said, it lasts longer. But also, I can always have some stocked in the fridge, for a rainy day. It’s less greasy, more spices, and easier clean up.

Anyway, I took the leftovers from the tacos, put em in a skillet, popped an egg on top, and covered it up to cook low and slow, while I got dressed this morning. Fast, easy, delicious, no food waste.

Lunch: I had exactly the same thing I had yesterday, in exactly the same location. Did not mind the repeat at all! Used up all my ingredients for that bowl. Need to think of something new for next week’s lunches.


Dinner: I have this weakness on Fridays, I always want to go out straight after work or order delivery, once I get home. When I saw chicken and dumplings on eat purely, I couldn’t resist.

Eat Purely is a new delivery service in the Chicago area, which delivers food to you, cold. You pop it in the oven or microwave before eating, so it feels like you’re eating a home cooked meal. All the ingredients are local and organic, they’ll even name which farms each ingredient came from. For an example, check out the details for my meal: here. The options change weekly, seasonal ingredients, and delivery is always faster than 20 minutes. (Delivery from anywhere else usually takes at least an hour, round these parts.)

They also give out really incredible discounts, so this entire meal tonight was free. If you are in the Chicago area and are interested in checking out Eat Purely, use this link and we’ll both get $20 for free. Seriously!

And now I want to finish my champagne and go to sleep. Crazy Friday night over here. I might get the cops called on me.

Thursday, October Nineteenth

Thursday, October Nineteenth

by kandynet 0 Comments


Breakfast Smoothie: Almond milk, frozen banana, frozen blackberries, mint, and peaches.

This amazing blender is Marc’s. Before him, I used a magic bullet. Now, I don’t think I’d ever be able to go back.

The combo of any kinda berry and fresh mint is fantastic. I threw the peach in there because it was about to go bad, that usually would not be an ingredient in this one. Sometimes I’ll toss in some kinda seed, like chia or flax, but was in a rush today.


Snack: Muffins I made on Sunday. I followed that recipe pretty much, except a couple things: instead of brown sugar, I used coconut sugar. Instead of the yogurt, I just threw another banana in. I think I might have completely doubled the fruit additions too, I like a little extra.

There’s an amazing produce store in my area, Stanley’s. At the end of berry season, they will sell an entire case of berries for 98 cents. That’s like, 9 lbs of berries for $1. So, I stock up and freeze em for smoothies. Frozen berries are also fine for baked goods. And of course, I always have bananas in there too. I’ve tried real hard to enjoy those grocery store frozen bags of fruits, but nothing beats the real thing.


Lunch: Quinoa, arugula, edamame hummus, alfalfa sprouts, beets, cucumber, asian tofu, lemony green beans, chipotle vinaigrette

This is a copycat I made of Lyfe Kitchen‘s quinoa crunch bowl. It’s not exactly the same, but it is daaaamn delicious. Highly recommend both the asian tofu recipe and the chipotle vinaigrette. I’ll definitely be making both again. The edamame hummus is amazing too, I’ve made it a handful times, and somehow it always comes out tasting different, but still delicious.


Dinner: Sandwich on sprouted bread, with edamame hummus, cucumbers, tomato slices, alfalfa sprouts, and a little chipotle vinaigrette.

It was the end of the loaf, the bread slices were real small, which means two sandwiches. Twice as nice!! It’s Thursday, I wanted to wrap up all the ingredients I made/sliced up on Sunday, for the quinoa bowls. Worked out quite nicely, if I do say so myself.

The lighting in my kitchen is the absolute worst, I’m going to have to figure out how to photo everything I eat, outside.

It’s a start

by kandynet 0 Comments

Okay. I really want to get this website going again. Something to entertain, vent, explore, experience… anything. Sharing recipes didn’t float my boat. I don’t travel nearly enough to make this some kinda travel blog. Sharing past stories ain’t really my thing.

Believe me, I have a lot of stories to tell, but who can share such intimate details on the internet? I used to love writing my thoughts out in some angsty, vague manner and posting them to the internet for all to see. But somewhere in my late 20s, that flip switched off. And it will not be turning back on. Unless I write my memoirs someday… either way, it’s not gonna be on the nets. There’s way too many people out here, talking about themself, all over the World Wide Web. I don’t wanna be one of em.

So, I asked myself: What do I love/obsess about the most? Well, food. Duh. No brainer. I wake up, thinking about breakfast; spend all morning, thinking about lunch; immediately after lunch, I’m thinking about dinner. I’ve even begun fantasizing about desserts after dinner. I was never a dessert person before. But I don’t care to post recipes… really, it would just be plagiarism anyway. I’m good at *following* recipes, not making them up outa thin air..? Who are those people?!?

That said, I love cooking. And it always surprises me when people are shocked by a person cooking at home. Sure, there are plenty of extravagant recipes out there that are intimidating to even look at. But for every one of those, there’s 50 more that are basically the same thing, but easier.

I wanna talk about those. What’s the best way to do that when I don’t wanna share recipes that aren’t mine?

I’m thinking… “What I ate today” posts. I’ll post photos of my food and links to the recipes, when applicable. There’s so many benefits to this for me:

1. I am always wanting to take photos of my food and put them somewhere, to brag about how gorgeous my meal is. This way, I can spare all my instagram followers the food porn spams.

2. It’ll motivate me to eat more beautiful, colorful foods. I lean heavily turns mostly plants, but I sometimes need some good ‘ol McNuggies. I’m human.

3. About the plants, it’ll give me an opportunity to share all these amazing products I’ve discovered since I cut down on my meat consumption. And maybe my reader will pick up something here or there, try something out, and love it as much as I do.

4. It’s like using MyFitnessPal, but next level. With more witnesses.

5. Maybe I’ll track my weight too? Ehh, who cares about that. Let’s talk about food!!!

Broken car window

by kandynet 0 Comments

When I moved to Chicago, it took exactly ten months to find a job that didn’t put me in my car for 4+ hours a day. Let me be clear here, I was so bull-headed against spending so much time in my car that I accepted a $6/hr pay cut and a shady AF job, just because I’d be able to walk to work when I felt like it. Unfortunately, this meant I needed to spend less on rent. At the time, I was being charged more for rent than I’ve since paid to live alone, and being asked to pay it in cash. But that’s another story for a another time.

After finding the job, I was desperate for a new, more affordable place to live. Not knowing a ton of people, I ended up being introduced to an acquaintance’s ex-girlfriend’s brother who needed a roommate because both of his just up and left. He was staying in a 3-bedroom place and was like, 19 years old, maybe 20, I just remember that I was 25. Now… here is the red flag that I chose to ignore. Roommates don’t just up and leave, with no notice, that’s not a thing. Unless you’re a complete douche-bag. But.. the rent was a third of what I was paying, so I did it anyway.

I never unpacked my kitchenware because the girl I lived with had an overabundance of things in the kitchen, my shit wasn’t necessary. So, it was weird when I moved into this place and the kitchen was completely empty. Not exaggerating. Empty, no dishes, no pans, no silverware, no food, empty fridge. But whatever, this is why I didn’t ever get rid of my cookware. I lugged all that crap across Iowa and to every apartment ever. I was clinging to the idea I’d eventually live alone again and I’d need it. And I was right, so I’m now glad for that.

I’m rambling about the importance of cookware, back to this new roommate.

This kid was constantly “borrowing” forty bucks from me and promising he’d pay it back. Pretty sure he was just buying little bags of weed over and over again. I mean, at least be economically about it and stock up. Me, trying to just keep the peace, and relieved at the lower amount I was paying for rent, it’s another thing I chose to ignore.

As mentioned, I had this car that I hated. It was the first car I ever bought, completely on my own, and it was a lemon. It had kind-of-broken windows? They weren’t really broken, but if you weren’t gentle with them, they would get stuck half way open. A variety of other little issues, but whatever, I woulda hated it even if it was perfect. For some reason, in my mid-twenties, driving just started making me an anxious ball of nerves. This was part of the appeal of moving to Chicago, driving is completely unnecessary. But I wasn’t yet confident that I could live without it. All the temp agencies kept sending me to the burbs just because I did own a car, which is rare among their clients. So when I finally found this job in the neighborhood, I decided to just keep it parked for like a year and see what happened. Basically, test myself on carless living.

Because I was never really using this car, and because I am a fucking nice person, dammit… I told my roomies they could borrow it, if they absolutely needed. The one guy never touched it, didn’t even care. I think his girlfriend actually had a car, so they never even considered using mine. But this kid, man.. Of course, every time I sat down in that car, the gas was on E. But that’s still another thing I chose to brush off.

One day in February, he decided he “needed” it to drive his girlfriend literally one block away to a walk-up restaurant. Let me explain something here, there’s no parking lot, it’s street parking only, in a heavily populated neighborhood, where tons of people are walking around. And 90% of these streets are permit parking only. It would take you longer to park the damn car than it would to just use your legs to get there. People driving to this place, would probably park near our apartment and think they got some rockstar parking. This kid was an idiot.

But that’s not even the frustrating part. As I was leaving to walk to work the next morning, not even aware he had taken it at all… I walk by my car and see the window stuck half way open. What in the fuck? It’s fine that the car’s a piece of shit, it’s fine you’ll never put gas in it, it’s fine you’re going to drive it 1 block away, it’s fine that you’re opening the window in the middle of February when it’s snowing (why, just why?!?!), it’s fine that the window even got stuck, whatever! What is not fine is not even mentioning the issue to me. My car sat outside, in the snow, overnight, with the damn window open. And when I went inside to grab my keys to fix it, I can’t find them, because he has them in his bedroom while he’s sleeping. When I mention the window? The fucker denies it!

After only two or three months of this charade, when I finally say “fuck this, I’m out”? As I’m packing my stuff up, he tries to claim all my dishware, especially the drinking glasses were his. At this point, I think he was just trying to push buttons because it was working. I regret that I forgot my little bear shaped spice holder there, for cinnamon and sugar. That kid does not deserve my bear shaped cinnamon and sugar.

Topic: my life & writing

by kandynet 0 Comments

I always thought I’d be a writer. Which is ridiculous… what, with no schooling, backing, experience in writing. And not even that much reading, if I’m being honest. I strongly believe you can’t be a good writer without devoting your life to reading every free second of your day. But I thought, somehow, if I just kept doing it forever and ever, eventually I’d develop a style all my own that people would enjoy. eyeroll.

In my teens, writing was my form of therapy. Whenever I was upset about anything, excited, or just thoughtful, I’d draft a real vague, stupid post, and tweak it for hours until it was just vague enough to my liking. I followed a lot of other bloggers and basically copied them. Total poser. Into my 20s, my own words would sometimes floor me as I was writing. It felt like such a form of relief just to get the damn thoughts outside of myself. I didn’t really care about who was viewing it anymore, I just wanted it out of my brain. It always made me feel better, even if all I did was talk in circles to myself.

Since I’m one hundred percent self-centered, the world revolves around me, everything is about me, the only thing I can actually write about is myself. Which is unfortunate because I’m incredibly boring. My life has been pretty easy. I have very loving parents who support all my stupid endeavors, even when they don’t fully agree. I’ve been broke, but I’ve never been so broke that I’m homeless. Again, thanks to my parents.

I used to purposefully put myself into these terrible situations. Just to spice things up a bit. I’d push the limits of my friendships, work life, even my living environment. I’ve had so many jobs, friends, and roommates that I just straight up walked out on. Ghosted before ghosting was a thing. Irish goodbyes. One reason was just to prove to myself that I could. The more you blow stuff up, the better you get at putting it all back together. The more stress you confront, the easier the stress is to handle. It’s like getting in a car wreck, but not panicking because you know what to do, you’ve been here before. The chaos is familiar.

Another reason was for the stories. I was determined to be expose myself to anything unknown. A lot of those people and places I walked out on, I shouldn’t have been around, in the first place. These were created from the moments when I would tell myself “this is a terrible idea, but let’s do it anyway and see what happens”. And then I’d have to hatch my escape plan. I got really good at escaping.

The good news is, I think I’ve got that out of my system. Bad news is, I never wrote specifically about any of these situations. If I did, it would have been a super angsty, but incredibly vague post here on kandy.net. Which is no longer accessible anyway because my site got hacked and I lost everything, a couple years ago. Ever since I learned how damn easy it is for anyone to pick up a written journal and read it, I don’t do that anymore. So, these stories are just in my head, never to be spoken of, because they’re mostly embarrassing.

I’d like to start writing about these events, people, places. The shit situations I gladly put myself into just to gladly get myself out of. I don’t know where to start. So let’s just sit on that for a minute.

Old man next door

Old man next door

by kandynet 0 Comments

In all the six years I’ve lived in my apartment, no one ever really moved in or out. That is, until the new landlord bought the place. Then, all the old patrons started flocking away from here and the youngins starting migrating in. The landlord remodeling each apartment in between the move outs & ins.

All but one man, right next to my apartment. Well… down a half flight of stairs, and across the hall from my apartment. It’s a weird layout.

When I first moved in, I was told this guy had already been living here for 16 years. He lived alone in a tiny ass apartment with one window in the back. Never had many visitors, except when his oxygen tanks were being delivered. He was really skinny and often hung out in a ratty old tank top, boxers, and slippers. He barely spoke English at all. I saw him in the European deli down the block a couple times, but I think that’s the only place he ever went. He usually sat on his bed with the screen door propped open. Or stood out on the deck, just neighborhood-watching. I used to think he was little creepy, then I realized he was just a shy person used to being alone. I learned this fact after my exploring cat tried to go into his apartment several times, I think he ate a lot of fish. I sometimes thought the only word he knew was “hello”, because that’s all I ever heard him say. But he must have known more than that, because he was always able to direct my food deliveries to the correct destination.

One day as Marc was leaving for work, he saw a fire truck and an ambulance parked out front of the building. They were carrying the old man away on a stretcher. When he saw Marc, he waved to him with a big smile on his face. Naturally, Marc thought “it must be something minor, he’s fine, he’ll be back.”

We never saw him again after that. Landlord said he was in hospice care. And now that they’re remodeling his apartment, one can only assume…

They started clearing out his belongings, to get ready for the remodel. For weeks, they had piles of stuff out on the deck, to be carried down to the dumpster. One night when I came home from work, this was laying out there. It’s so corny, I had to grab it. Now I’m kinda in love with it.

File_000

There’s no point to my story. It’s just that this old man touched my life and I never knew him in the slightest. I couldn’t even tell you his name. I actually miss his presence when I come home. I miss someone awkwardly saying hello to me in his little robot-like voice. I miss knowing that someone else is checking to see what that sound was outside the building. I miss having someone around who made this place feel like a community… Somehow, without actually doing anything at all, he was just there, keeping watch. It was kind of comforting.

If I ever fell down the many flights of stairs in this damn building, I know he would have called 911. Now, who would call em? I’d be like Kitty Genovese… thirteen apartments in this building, at least twice as many residents. They’d all be too busy staring at their phones and drinking Old Style to notice my broken legs/arm/neck. I already know whoever moves in there won’t be nearly as enjoyable as a neighbor, as that old man was.

Here’s to you, old man. Thanks for looking out for me for a few years and the lovely swan photo that I will forever cherish now.

Produce and Wildlife

Produce and Wildlife

This weekend, we went to Marc’s parents’ house. Marc and his mom made a delicious feast of shrimps, corn, potatoes, and a watermelon/tomato/feta salad.

shrimp & cornWatermelon Caprese

She sent us off with soooo many goodies from her garden: tomatoes, carrot, zucchinis, peppers, basil, thyme, rosemary, mint, parsley, chives, dill, green beans, cucumber. All great items!

File_008veggies

On the way back into the city, we stopped at this place Marc had been telling me about. Trailside Museum in River Forest. This house is over 75 years old and is a haven for injured wild animals and infants who are too young to fend for themselves. When they are well again, they are released back into the wild.

Turkey VultureCoyote

I thought it was interesting they had Pokemon GO signs for each cage, next to the normal descriptions…. that’s one way to get the kids interested.

OwlEastern Screech OwlPokemon Go

When we got back home, we went to a nearby farmer’s market and picked up a few things, but most importantly: the most delicious bloody mary mix I’ve ever tasted and some spicy dilly green beans, to drop into the bloody maries.

blood mary mix + spicy dilly beans

4th of July

4th of July

This weekend had absolutely perfect weather. We’ve been talking about going camping, for months. Marc has all the gear you could desire to make this happen, but we never use it. Aside from girl scout camp when I was around 10, I can’t say I’ve ever really been camping, as an adult. So, I suggested we do a dry run in his parent’s backyard. And let me tell you, it was so much fun.

Earlier in the day, we went for a bike ride in Busse Woods.

Map of Busse WoodsAnother map

Click here for a nice little video I can’t figure out how to embed.

Back at the house.. I set up the tent all by myself, which I am extremely proud of, even though it’s made to be easy.

File_003 (1)File_003File_005 (2)

We made carrot dogs, ceviche made with hearts of palm instead of fish, and potatoes. But we didn’t eat until late, so I have no photos of the food.

I can’t wait to go camping for real, there are about a million nearby places for real cheap overnight stays.

Melon Salad with Basil

Melon Salad with Basil

After a stay in a hotel, where water is not necessarily in great supply, you get a little dehydrated. What’s better for dehydration than a bunch of watery watermelon??

This is a great dish to bring to a potluck or big outdoor party. We plan to eat this as a snack or side at lunch, all week long. The lime juice will help the fruit not rot right away.

Here is Marc in the process of melon balling it all.


Print Recipe
Melon Salad with Basil
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Fruit
Prep Time 10 minutes
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Fruit
Prep Time 10 minutes
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Cut all the melons into bite size pieces, drop it all in a large bowl with the blueberries.
  2. To make the dressing: In a small bowl, mix together lime zest, lime juice, basil, and chia seeds.
  3. Pour the dressing over the salad, mix, getting all the melon pieces covered in the dressing.
Recipe Notes

I have a melon baller, which is great for things like this. This can be eaten right away, but it's better if you let it sit in the fridge for a few hours, let those flavors really blend together.

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